Clippers fined $50,000 by NBA for Doc Rivers’ comments on Kawhi Leonard
The NBA announced on Thursday that they have fined the LA Clippers $50,000 over Doc Rivers’ comments on the the Kawhi Leonard situation.
Leonard did not play in a nationally-televised game on ESPN Wednesday against the Milwaukee Bucks due to his ongoing “load management” plan.
Clippers coach Doc Rivers said Wednesday that Kawhi “feels great,” which led to further anger from fans who had paid to watch the great matchup and ended up seeing a Clippers team without their best player.
Doc on Kawhi "He feels great. But he feels great because of what we've been doing… We're just going to continue to do it. There's no concern here. But we want to make sure. I think Kawhi made a statement that he's never felt better. It's our job to make sure he stays that way."
— Dan Woike (@DanWoikeSports) November 7, 2019
If Leonard “feels great,” then why isn’t he playing, fans wondered?
The Clippers argued to the league that Leonard is dealing with ongoing knee trouble, which is an argument the league accepted in allowing Leonard to miss the game under the league’s resting policy.
The league said in their statement about the fine that they determined Leonard is managing a knee condition.
— Brad Townsend (@townbrad) November 7, 2019
Adam Silver has established himself as a player-friendly commissioner who supports the players’ desires to keep their bodies in optimal conditions, even if that means missing games. What they don’t want is the perception that players are missing games for no reason, which is why they fined the Clippers. Rivers’ comments make the league and team look worse for the suggestion that they are sitting a healthy player.